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Backup DokuWiki to Amazon S3 with PHP

I have a small RamNode VPS that I use as a VPN server. I also host my personal wiki on there and use it to document interesting things that I would otherwise forget. The information in my wiki is pretty valuable to me. I therefore decided that I needed a way to automatically backup my wiki, just in case.

I'm a pretty big fan of Amazon S3 and what better place is there to backup your data? It's safe, secure and very cheap!

Sadly though, I couldn't find a working S3 backup script for DokuWiki that was written in PHP. The official DokuWiki websites lists Ruby and Python scripts but since I'm not familiar with those languages (and don't have them on my server) I decided to write one in PHP.

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Building a meta-search engine

At the end of 2012 I launched a search engine that combined the offerings of six different second hand websites in Belgium. It was called 'Zoekertjesland' and indexed well over 3 million items.

Last week however I unplugged the server and stopped the project. I'm a student and renting a VPS for 2 years without any income from the website is costly.

In this post I'll walk you through the technical aspects of building a meta-search engine like this one (with PHP, MariaDB and Sphinx).

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Running OpenVPN on a cheap RamNode VPS

When I'm on the road and connecting to free public WiFi access points, I always use OpenVPN to prevent my traffic from being intercepted by others. It's also very practical to circumvent the restrictive firewall at my school.

I've always used a veriety of free OpenVPN services but these are unreliable, throttle transfer speeds and usually have other restrictions. To fix this, I ordered a cheap OpenVZ based VPS from RamNode to run my own OpenVPN server. In this post I'll walk you through the steps I performed to install and configure OpenVPN on Ubuntu Server 13.10

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